Wednesday, November 28, 2012


"I urge you, therefore, in view of God's mercies, to offer your bodies as a living sacrifice to God." (Romans 12:1)

You know, I've not only read that verse over a thousand times, I've also blogged about it here nearly as much. But the other day I actually saw it again and understood it as if reading it for the very first time.

Yes, we are called to be living sacrifices to God, but with an emphasis on the “living” part. See, it’s “life, life, life” that God wants to give you, not the constant pain of the dead flesh being consumed on the altar.

Notice that Paul in Romans 12 follows up this statement  about being a living sacrifice with a list of things he wants to emphasize, and all of them are great things:

First, Paul says that this act of becoming a living sacrifice is our worship to God. Worship is good. Then he talks about transformation and renewing our minds. Those are also great things. Next he says that this will result in knowing God's good, perfect, and pleasing will for our lives.

All of this is good. What's the downside to being a living sacrifice? Nothing. In fact, if you keep reading Romans 12 you'll end up with an even longer list of blessings, including a more loving fellowship in a Body of believers and a more Christ-like spirit towards others.

I suppose my entire paradigm has since shifted regarding this idea of death to self and my need to embrace the continual life of Christ that such sacrifice produces in my heart. For too long now I've been fixated on this idea of death to self (which is still quite necessary) without fully understanding my need to go onward to the part about how God wants to pour into my heart an overabundance of his astounding love and his glorious life.

So, the next time you hear someone talk about the need to die to yourself and become a living sacrifice, be sure to picture in your mind a happy, dancing, life-filled clown like me who is absolutely so full of the life of Christ that he’s about to explode. Because that’s what it actually means.

As God says, “I want your loyalty, not your sacrifices. I want you to know me, not to give me burnt offerings.” (Hosea 6:6 )


1 comment:

Lynn said...

Wow! Thanks for the perspective. Speak life, life life into one another.